Tag Archives: Disrespect

It Shouldn’t Be That Difficult

Don’t worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you.
Robert Fulghum

It doesn’t surprise me that this quote would come from someone who wrote a book called, All I Really Need To Know I learned In Kindergarten. Because children really learn, very early in life, the foundation of what should be most important to the rest of their lives.

Like all parents, I’m sure we made our share of mistakes. Parenting is a learn as you go experience so you do the best you can in situations you never imagined. Some moments require patience and understanding while some are simply common sense. Or should be.

For me, the Fulghum quote falls into the common sense category. It’s just so obvious that it’s painful to watch when it happens, and it happens much too often.

Most parents are big on discipline. They make sure their children say please and thank you. They try and teach them to be independent and they want them to respect their authority. They may punish them for disobeying their directives or not doing well in school. The list goes on.

But Fulghum takes parenting to another level of responsibility that parents sometimes ignore. The impact their own words and actions have on their children.

Are you teaching them what should be most important in their lives or satisfying your own desires because you’re unwilling or too lazy to do what’s right?

Is your language in front of your children what it should be? Children hear everything, even when you think they’re not listening.

Do you show the proper respect to others and ask that they do the same, explaining instead of ignoring or dismissing? Respect comes in many forms. Your lack of discipline should not become theirs. Continued excuses are unacceptable.

Are your prejudices on display in full view of your children? They notice and will react accordingly.

Do you attempt to influence their thoughts and actions instead of allowing them to try and make up their own minds?

Do you allow life to lead them or attempt to lead them through life without consideration for their own thoughts and interests.

Children hear what you say from the back seat of the car, from their rooms, during meals, while you think they’re preoccupied, while you’re on the phone or at the park speaking to your friends. They hear you at games, after games, during school functions and in every situation where your body language speaks louder than your words.

The absorb everything.

They recognize at a very early age what you think is most important and will follow accordingly. In many ways they will pattern their lives based on the influences your show them and the importance you place on certain things, and once it’s ingrained in their DNA, it’s hard to change. Next month or next year is too late.

Then one day they become a little older and you may not like what you see or hear. Discipline becomes a little harder until it’s not possible and then they’re on their own. A reflection of your words and actions.

Common sense stuff, right?

One would think so.

 

 

Why?

My wife and I were having a late lunch outdoors at a casual restaurant the other day. Small groups of women sat at two of the tables, one table had two men and two tables were occupied by professional looking, well dressed couples. One couple looked to be in their 30’s the other in their mid 40’s. I’m not sure if they were married but since they were both directly in front of me, I could tell by their conversation that they were much more than friends. They seemed to have a pleasant lunch, laughed several times, conversed easily and when the bill was presented, the guy paid. A short time later the 30’s couple left and about five minutes after that, the 40’s couple did the same.

But it was how they left that really bothered me and almost caused me to leave my seat.

In both cases, the guy stood up and began walking to the parking lot before the woman was even out of her seat. In both cases, the guy opened his car door and got in while the woman was still navigating her way out of the patio dining area. In both cases the guy started the car as the woman was walking through the parking lot. The woman who was in her 40’s looked over at me as she passed by and gave me an embarrassed smile before looking away.

There aren’t many things that really get under my skin but disrespect is at the very top of my list. The problem is, I don’t know who I was more upset with, the guys for being disrespectful or the women for tolerating it. Because I would bet the ranch this isn’t the first time this happened. This is their relationship. This is how these men treat these women and this is what these women accept. The question is why?

I’ve always believed that you can’t force someone to respect you but you sure as hell can refuse to be disrespected. If someone allows it to happen, it is guaranteed to continue. I realize this works both ways; that both men and women are responsible for this type of behavior toward the other but I believe women share the brunt of this type of boorish behavior.

If you don’t respect the person you’re in a relationship with, then why are you there? If you’re not respected by the person you are in a relationship with, then why do you stay?

I don’t understand.

Slapping Stupidity

There really isn’t much that sets me off to the point of immediate anger. You can count them on one hand with fingers left over. Disrespect is one of those things. Its a trigger point for me.  I’ve seen too much of it directed at women, the elderly, those less fortunate, even children.

I don’t know how this woman kept herself under control as well as she did but she said she’s dealt with it far too often so maybe you find a way to cope. I’m not a woman so I really don’t know.

Don’t you just want to slap the smug stupidity off the faces of this human garbage? The first guy talking even takes off his sunglasses so there is no mistaking the apparent pride he feels in making these comments. The other excuse for wasted DNA suggests that because they say these types of things at soccer games in England, its okay to do the same thing here and believes his mother would die laughing when she saw this.

Really?

Let me tell you what I would do. If either of these stenches worked for me, assuming they even have jobs, their personal belongings would be at the front door the next morning. I wouldn’t want them contaminating my building any more than they already have. Then I’d have a serious conversation with their supervisors because I’m pretty sure this conduct is not  specific to soccer games.

If they were my significant other, their clothes and personal items would be in the dumpster. In flames.

As far as being a parent to one of these genetic mistakes, I don’t think laughter would be an initial response, though again, I’m confident this type of behavior didn’t show up that day. Respect is learned over time.

The worthless excuse for a security guard who stood there with a half-smile on his face as he picked up his camera time? Unemployment line with those other putrid abominations of waste. Standing around doing nothing is just as bad as the insults.

This is the cleaned up version of what I’d really like to say.

Sorry…..but this stuff just gets under my skin.